We had a death in the family Saturday.  Never a good thing no matter when or to whom it happens, or what family is left behind to grieve.  And this one was no different in that respect.  I’ve been thinking every time we’ve returned home that I should come here and “talk” about it, but I haven’t because I haven’t known what to say.  I still don’t.

I’m so sad, hurting though I’m not exactly sure where the pain is coming from.  The man who died was a peaceful, pleasant person who saw his 93rd year before he left this earth.  All who knew him loved him and that feeling was mutual.  And he loved babies and dogs.  Nobody who loves babies and dogs could ever be a bad person….at least not in my book.

Family who hadn’t been together for 20 years was reunited, happily so, and surprisingly so.  Even though the loss was great, the loss wasn’t total.  All the new babies were loved and passed around.  If not for this gathering how old would those babies have been before getting that love from so many hearts, even if they’re too young to remember all those hands that held them or all the kisses bestowed upon them in the past week?  All the children got to experience the adults in new forms as they age and change with Time’s march.  All the adults got a chance to rebond over new interests, ailments and cares.  Everyone got a chance to cry without shame, hold, hug and kiss whomever they cared to, and not have to “be” anything they weren’t capable of being in the moment.  Everyone who came together got to show their love for the deceased, to feel the pain of loss, and, for some, to realize just how much they cared but never realized it before.

And this family is like so many other blended families of this era.  Parts have split, new marriages, deaths, divorce, and births have changed the face of this family.  But this family is luckier than most because all the parts have healed and all the pieces put back together have meshed into a cohesive unit that functions well together.  Sometimes it surprises me how well we all “work” considering all the fractures that have rebonded.  Ernest Hemingway said in The Sun Also Rises: “The world breaks everyone and afterward many are strong at the broken places. But those that will not break it kills. It kills the very good and the very gentle and the very brave impartially. If you are none of these you can be sure it will kill you too but there will be no special hurry”.

And, of course, there’s a sick dog in the story.  It wouldn’t be one of my stories without one, would it?  We brought her home with us to doctor.  She’s lost her daddy and is ailing, and we have such a wonderful veterinarian that we wanted to give her a chance to heal physically even while she is grieving the loss of her owner.  And perhaps it will give those still grieving a rest from caring for her in her illness, too.  We couldn’t walk away from her without trying to save her, too.  And maybe she’ll help our hearts heal, too.  Next time I’ll post about Jolie.

A Few Steps Closer to Retirement

I’ve been working myself toward retirement for the past few years until I finally have it down to less than 4 months.  I’m paying off my financial committments because I don’t want to be in a financial pinch any time in the next 20 years or so.  Loans paid off, car paid off, house paid off, dogs almost paid off (LOL); Ronnie has to pay off his own before he can think about retirement.  I still owe $300 on my new Coverpro machine.  I have my Paypal account and my Bill Me Later accounts that I will pay down to a minimum but will never completely lose them as long as I still have my life.  We only have one credit card and that is with Sears for a refrigerator (that Ronnie loves) and a treadmill (that Maximus loves) and hopefully will be paid off by the time I retire.  We’re doing really well in knocking out these responsibilities.  I can now see it coming together for the first time.  I’ve stressed and worried over this decision for years and now that it’s here, it’s an anticlimax.  It’s all over but the shouting!  YeeeeeeHawwwww!!!!!!!!!!!!

On another note it seems like the dogs are getting ready for retirement, too.  As I have calmed down lately so have they.  It is quieter in here, everyone gets along better, even Gino eats on a schedule now.  Who’d a thought three weeks ago that peace could reign in this house?  We very definitely need to give our pack a break.  We’ve put them through a lot over time with the fosters and the dogs we’ve baby-sat for, because even though we knew it was temporary they didn’t.  They had to give up their space, their attention, their affection, peace, fun, etc. in order to humor us.  And they handled it well for what they went through.  But it’s over now, guys.  We’re holding now.  We’re chilling out and taking some time for ourselves.  Now it’s our turn, your turn, my turn.

A Night at the Opera

A night at the movies, home movies that is.  Gino, Dusty and mom enjoying some time snuggling and kicking back on the loveseat.  Not really opera; just Netflix while snuggling my little boys.  Yes, MY little boys.  We decided we couldn’t give Gino up after all.  So he’s a Lindsey now.  The last of the Lindseys.  We’re full now and holding.  Gotta get my retirement done before I’ll have any time to throw away for a while.  We’ll just be content to babysit here and there for other people’s pooches and spend some quality time with our own.
Maximus is still enjoying his treadmill (when Ronnie has a chance to put him on it—that chore seems to have gravitated to Ronnie’s realm of responsibility) and is doing well, happy and peaceful.  He loves playing with Gino and is so good with him.  He will just let Gino chew on him and jump on him to his heart’s content.  I don’t know who’s having more fun with those two.  Bandit plays with all the dogs.  He’s everyone’s big brother.  Fancypants is the senior who can take or leave the rest of the pack.  She prefers to be left alone even if that sometimes means under the bed by herself.  The other dogs will leave her alone so it seems to work.  And if we miss her we know right where to look.  Mimi still bites and barks way too much, but since we have less animals here and she’s getting more one-on-one time she seems to be a happier camper.  Gypsy will soon be 4 years old and, much like her mother, she rules the roost HER way and tells the big dogs exactly what she wants and doesn’t want.  She’s still Ronnie’s arm-candy even when I dress her in ruffles.  Dusty is still my baby and has been enduring a bout of jealousy since Gino, Buffy and my 3 grand-dogs came into our home.  He’s so glad to lose 4 of them and is waiting (not too patiently) for Gino to pack his suitcase, too.  Gino, on the other hand, is in no hurry to leave and since he first set foot here, he’s the ball of fire that keeps the whole house rocking.